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Oral history interview with Robert R. Sampson, October 9, 2002

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Creator:Sampson, Robert R.
Creator:Hornsby-Gutting, Angela
Creator:Southern Oral History Program
Title:Oral history interview with Robert R. Sampson, October 9, 2002
Date:2002 Oct. 9

At the time of this interview, Robert Sampson was running a pharmacy on East Market Street in Greensboro, North Carolina. Sampson describes how urban renewal in the late 1950s and early 1960s affected Greensboro's thriving black shopping district on Market Street. Sampson himself managed to stay ahead of redevelopment efforts, leaving areas destined for change for places he thought more secure. However, most black businesspeople did not expect renewal efforts or see them as inevitable; as a result, they lost their businesses and often found it impossible to rebuild or relocate. While Sampson concedes that the dilapidated buildings on Market Street needed work, he suspects that the choice to seize and redevelop, rather than fund remodeling, was an effort by white Greensboro to dissolve a successful black business district. The effort worked, silencing a lively area and greatly damaging black businesses. This interview provides a look at a black business community's struggle to maintain its coherence in a changing economic climate.

The Civil Rights Digital Library received support from a National Leadership Grant for Libraries awarded to the University of Georgia by the Institute of Museum and Library Services for the aggregation and enhancement of partner metadata.

Types:Transcripts | Sound recordings | Oral histories (document genres) | Text | Sound
Subjects:Sampson, Robert R. | African American businesspeople--North Carolina--Greensboro | African American pharmacists--North Carolina--Greensboro | African Americans--Commerce--North Carolina--Greensboro | Urban renewal--North Carolina--Greensboro | Greensboro (N.C.)--Economic conditions | African American neighborhoods--North Carolina--Greensboro | African Americans--North Carolina--Greensboro--Social life and customs | Segregation--North Carolina--Greensboro | United States, North Carolina, Guilford County, Greensboro, 36.0726355, -79.7919754
Collection:Oral Histories of the American South: The Civil Rights Movement
Institution:Documenting the American South (University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill)
Contributors:University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Documenting the American South (Project)
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Forms part of Oral histories of the American South collection.

Persistent Link to Item:http://docsouth.unc.edu/sohp/R-0182/menu.html